General Aims

The aim of the course is to enable participants to plan and develop navigational tools to undertake coastal journeys in moderate sea conditions. Following the training participants will be able:

  • To know the different resources available to them to plan coastal journeys. (i.e. Pilots, almanacs, sailing directions, charts and other digital available data).
  • To know how to interpret and apply data from the various resources to aid them in trip planning.
  • To be able to plan a coastal journey and have taken into account, weather, tide and other anticipated hazard.
  • To source, apply and interpret a marine forecast.

Attendance Requirements

Requirements for attending an ECN assessment:

  • Current member of Canoeing Ireland

Course Content

  • Cause and effect of weather systems and fronts
  • Beaufort scale
  • Sea state
  • Sources of forecasts
  • Obtaining and interpreting a marine forecast
  • Tide
  • Cause of tides, springs/ neaps / equinoctial tides
  • Tide tables
  • Tidal streams and sources of information on tidal streams
  • Rule of 12ths and 3rds
  • Awareness and predicting tidal anomalies.
  • Using proformas for tidal calculations
  • Plotting positions
  • Scales and measurements
  • Buoyage and lights
  • Magnetic variations
  • Tidal diamonds
  • Using tides in conjunction with GPS

• Layout and sourcing information in coastal pilot / sailing directions / almanacs

• Shortcomings of the above for kayaking

• Identifying and transferring relevant data for kayaking

  • Various considerations to consider when planning a trip, e.g. timing, group ability, weather, environmental / local factors, logistics….
  • Calculating ETAs and ETDs from looking at tide gates and other crux points.
  • Planning with reference to HW
  • Identifying suitable pilotage features, e.g. transits, etc.
  • Planning from the deck and how to calculate EPs and use DR

Course Documents